With Gulf War II less than two weeks old, we're impressed to see that Nigerian advanced fee fraudsters - or "419ers" as they're known in the parlance of international scams - have rapidly deployed to offer Western partners a bite of the Iraqi oil billions falafel:
10 Jasim Street,
Ibrahim'Ali, Baghdad, Iraq.
Re: Urgent Assistance Needed
By way of introduction I am Eng. Farouk Al-Bashar, I represent my family as the oldest son of the Al-Bashar family, who are the descendants of Ibrahim Al-Bashar Ali from one of the oil rich areas in Iraq. Over the years my family has acquired huge sums of money from royalties for the exploration of oil in our region but over the past 15 years, Saddam Hussein and his gangs of bandits have taken our oils without payments and we can not complain as those who did are all dead. In the wake of the Gulf War of 1990, our family withdrew most moneys that remain in coded bank accounts that Saddam did not find and we hide it in a secret chamber underground, where it remained safe until after the war. At the end of Gulf war, we moved the funds into a private vault of a security company in Baghdad, where it was until we collected it a few days ago on the fear of the eminent war with America.
We pray they remove Saddam as he is the cause of much hardship here, but our funds are trapped here and there is no avenue to transfer any amount from Iraq without Saddam knowing. The problem now is how do we transfer the funds totalling US$12.5 Million in cash from here.
We are afraid that with the capacity of the bombs America is coming to Baghdad with nowhere would be safe for the money, so we need you to help in securing a private collection agency who would come to Iraq and collect the money and have them moved to the west, where our family is planning to relocate to as life in Iraq is no longer worth living because of Saddam.
I have to travel lots of miles each day to send an email hoping someone out there would assist this family, if you can we will give you the details of an agency that can lift the funds from here as given to me by a US Marine. The private collection agency would then collect the fund from here and deliver it to you for safe keep. Hoping the American campaign would be successful, we would then come over to your country for a meeting to share the funds and hopefully start a new life with you as a partner.
For your assistance with this project the family is willing to give you 10% of the funds, however if this does not suit you we are open for negotiation.
We eagerly await your response so we can inform you of the next line of action.
Eng. Farouk Al- Bashar
For the entire Al-Bashar family
We wonder if this Al-Bashar is by any chance related to Dave "Basher" Al-Bashar, East End enforcer and personal friend of the Kray twins' mother Violet? If so, readers are warned to approach this deal with caution.
And why, we ask, are Nigerian wide-boys risking cruise-missile-borne fiery death to liberate Saddam's ill-gotten gains? Haven't they heard there's a war on? Perhaps this, from Reg reader Ross Brown, will clarify the situation:
MY GOOD FRIEND,
I AM MAKING THIS CONTACT IN GOOD FAITH,BELIEVING THAT YOU WILL ASSIT ME FOR A MUTUAL BENEFIT.
I AM MR. ANTHONY ENYIDEDE.THE SON OF THE SLAIN COMMMISSIONER OF FINANCE IN IMO STATE OF NIGERIA.
MY FATHER LATE PROFFESSOR GODWIN ENYIDEDE WAS KILLED BY THE MILLITARY DURING THE SECOND REPUBLIC THAT USHERED IN THE PRESENT ADMINISTRATION OF CHIEF OLUSEGUN OBASANJO THE INCUBENT PRESIDENT OF NIGERIA. BEFORE THE DEATH OF MY FATHER HE DEPOSITED THE SUM OF 6.3 US$ IN THE APEX BANK OF NIGERIA,THE CENTRAL BANK OF NIGERIA(C.B.N.) THE SAID MONEY HAS BEEN IN THE BANK FOR THE PAST FOUR(4) YEARS HE DIED. NOW ,I AM LOOKING FOR A FOREIGN FRIEND TO HELP ME TRANSFER THIS MONEY INTO HIS PERSONAL OR COMPANY ACCOUNT ABROAD.THIS MONEY WHEN TRANSFERD WILL BE SHARED IN PERCENTAGE DEPENDING ON THE AGREEMENT REACHED BY TWO OF US.I AM ALSO ASSURING YOU THAT THIS TRANSACTION IS RICK FREE. PRESENTLY,I AM A SECOND YEAR LAW STUDENT OF THE IMO STATE UNIVERSITY,NIGERIA.WHILE THIS TRANSACTION IS ON I WILL LIKE YOU SEND ME AN INVITATION LETTER TO YOUR COUNTRY,SO THAT I WILL COME OVER TO HAVE A SHARE OF THIS MONEY AS SOON AS IT IS TRANSFERRED INTO YOUR NOMINATED PERSONAL OR COMPANY ACCONT.
I ALSO HAVE THE INTENTIONS OF STUDING ABROAD AS SOON AS THIS TRANSFER IS EFFECTED. THIS TRANSACTION MUST BE CONCLUDED BEFORE THE MONTH OF APRIL,BECAUSE THE STATE GOVERNMENT MAY RECALL THIS MONEY FOR THE NATION WIDE ELECTION COMING UP IN NIGERIA BY APRIL,A CLOSE SOURCE FROM THE GOVERNMENT HOUSE GAVE ME THE INFORMATION.
THANK YOU IN ANTICIPATION.
Yes that's right: having plundered Nigeria's state treasury and handed out billions of excess dollars left lying around by deceased US building contractors, the poor old 419ers have a meagre $6.3 left to distribute to the West's needy.
There is, however, one distinct advantage to this transaction, as our correspondent points out: "I note with interest that the proposed deal is "RICK FREE". Good, I used to know someone called Rick and definitely don't want him denting my share of the profits."